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Since 1732, the Redemptorists — a congregation of missionary priests and brothers — have followed in Jesus’ footsteps, preaching the Word and serving the poor and most abandoned.
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Monthly Archives: March 2016
Wednesday

St. Clement Hofbauer was born Johannes Hofbauer on December 26, 1751, in Tasswitz, Moravia, the ninth child of a butcher and his wife. His father died when he was only 6 years old. His mother then held a crucifix before him and said, “From now on, He is your father. Take care that you never [read more]

Tuesday

“Do you want to be well?” This is what Jesus asks the man in today’s Gospel. But rather than give Jesus a quick “yes!” he gives excuses: “I have no one to put me in the pool” and “Someone else gets there before me.” Perhaps he was accustomed to being sick, and it was easier just to remain ill.

Often when I’m giving retreats, people will tell me about some problem they’re having and ask for advice. I’ll offer a suggestion, but often the person will tell me why and how the suggestion won’t work. I call this the “yes, but” response: “Yes, but you see, my situation is different.” “Yes, but you don’t understand.”

Like the man in the Gospel, some people become accustomed to their problems. Resolving them would bring new challenges, new responsibilities they may not want to face. They may complain about their problems, but they’d much rather complain than fix them. It’s just easier.

This Lent, Jesus asks each of us, “Do you want to be well?” “Do you want your sins forgiven?” “Do you want to be healed and made whole?”

Are we willing to accept the challenges and responsibilities that forgiveness brings? Or will we say, “Yes, but . . .”

Father Gerard H. Chylko, C.Ss.R.
Philadelphia

Scripture readings for today: Ezekiel 47:1-9, 12; Psalm 46; John 5:1-16

Monday

One challenge of our time is that of our “lost souls,” people who were practicing members of our faith community and have drifted away.

Parents experience this with their children and wonder, “Was it something we did or didn’t do? And how can we bring them back?”

Today’s Gospel points to an answer. It tells of “a royal official whose son was ill,” who went to Jesus, asking Him to come and heal his son. Jesus tells him, “you may go; your son will live.” The Gospel says “the man believed Jesus and left.”

And “while the man was on his way, his slaves met him and told him that his boy would live.” The Gospel ends with the words, “he and his whole household came to believe.”

It was the faith of the father that healed his son. The faith of the household came later. This happens often in the Gospels. People are saved by the faith of others.

Our prayers for our youth are important—as well as our good example and advice. But most of all, it is our faith in Jesus’ acting in them that will bring them home.

Father Thomas Travers, C.Ss.R.
Esopus, N.Y.

Scripture readings for today: Isaiah 65:17-21; Psalm 30; John 4:43-54

Tuesday

“Try to remember, and if you remember, then follow.”

Those lyrics from the musical The Fantasticks are very good words to remember and put into practice as we reflect on the Scriptures this third Tuesday of Lent.

Azariah, in the book of Daniel, prays aloud to God for all the people. He cries out that we are nothing without God. He begs the Lord not to abandon us, or we are lost.

But he doesn’t put all the responsibility on God. Azariah also says, “O God, we remember your faithfulness, and we will do our part. Receive our humble and contrite hearts and spirits.”

In so many words, Azariah says, we remember the faithfulness of God, and we will follow by the example of our lives.

In the Gospel of St. Matthew, Jesus calls us to mercy and forgiveness. There is no limit to God’s forgiveness, and we must strive to be imitators of Christ in the forgiveness we bring to ourselves and to others. That’s not always easy, but it’s the call of true discipleship.

Let us remember the words of Jesus: “The measure that you measure out to others will be measured back to you.”

“Try to remember, and if you remember (please, God!), then follow.”

Father Denis Sweeney, C.Ss.R.
Boston

Scripture readings for today: Daniel 3:25, 34-43; Psalm 25; Matthew 18:21-35